Learn English – a “plumber’s wife”


This is about an expression used by a female manager at a hotel in Philadelphia (PA) some years ago. She was showing me around as part of my employment interview, and during this made a statement that she was "a plumber's wife".

She said this seemingly out-of-context. She was telling me about the hotel and then made this statement. The way she said it made it sound like she meant something else than the face value of the expression.

I ignored it at that point but later on thought that it was some idiomatic expression, because of how she had said it (I had just moved to USA from Europe and idiomatic english expressions sometimes got the best of me).

So what is a plumber's wife?

Best Answer

This is not a common idiomatic expression. It's likely that she meant it literally, and either it was a non-sequitur or you missed the context that would have explained it. For instance, if she had just mentioned some maintenance details about the hotel infrastructure, she could have been explaining that she pays attention to those kinds of details because of her husband's profession.